WITHIN, part 6

When we returned from Camp I stopped loving the story God has for me.  Vulnerable and unable to reconcile the way I was treated there, along with returning to financially living on the edge of a knife once again, I just went numb.  8 years of riveting struggle beyond any I have known anyone else to endure (perhaps because few speak of such) collapsed upon me.  I simply stopped wanting to try.

I write that as though its past tense.  Its not.

This woman who prayed so fervently, read scripture daily and spent a day a week alone with the Lord seeking Him, knocking to Know, pondering, now does none of the above.  Even at night when I look at the stars I feel nothing.  Numb.    Well, there is something I feel; its akin to seeing an old boyfriend.  Knowledge, but zero connection.

I did the hard things, took the hard road, gave up everything, have stuck it out.  And I feel beaten, as if I have been dragged behind a truck.

I am Noah drunk on the beach (even though I don't drink). I am Jonah with an attitude problem.  I am Elijah discouraged and despairing.  I am Job saying to God, "you have worn me out."  I am bitter Mara once again.

I did not want to come back to Colorado.  It has been nothing but a struggle for us here.  But Doug felt we should, that "our work here was not done".  I am so tired of following Doug.  I am so tired of waiting year after year while he tries to figure out what the Lord has for him.  I feel that in every life season since we married I have had to pick myself up and counsel my heart to follow this man. Im so tired of counseling my heart.  The words ring empty to me now.  ( I know this is part of the longterm deal of the Christian life, counseling ones heart, I am just admitting despair and deep discouragement.)

Upon moving back I decided to get a job to help out.  I now work two days a week - 12 hour shifts.  Its fine.  I also reached out to the women's ministry at our church asking how I might help (feels like absurdity with the shape of my heart right now, I know).  Somehow I ended up spearheading the shaping of a community wide Titus 2 mentoring ministry.  Of all the seasons for me to do such, this one?  I tell all those dear to me that it feels like a joke.  I, who do not even sing anymore, am telling others to, and how, to mentor?  I try to tell others, even within this ministry, how dry I am, but they don't seem to hear me.  What language does one use to communicate such?

When we went to Camp we were in a desperate place.  Being there met many of the practical needs we had.  I felt it was what I was being Asked to do to help Doug and our family.  Was I a fool?  Being on staff ended up changing everything I felt about that place that I had my entire life held so dear, that my children had held so dear.   It subtly changed our whole family structure as well.   We have been on multiple church staffs, I understand that ministry is hard.  But this was different in every way.   I became bitter there.  And I have returned bitter.  Bitter at Doug, bitter about my life, bitter toward the Lord.  And I don't seem to want to work through the bitterness as I have in the past.  Its like the fight isn't worth it to me anymore.  I fought for so long in so many regards.  Im tired now.

Its been 3 months since I returned.  I thought things would be better by now.

Each day it feels I have only enough to engage with my daughters.  Nothing more.  Anything else is manufactured due to need (ministry, marital, relationships outside our home).  I feel like the walking dead.  Dead in my heart, dead in my mind.  I am unable to create, which feels scary.

I think this is what happens when one stops loving the story God has for them.  I don't know, I have never been here before.